John A. Szivek, PhD

Adjunct Associate Professor, Aerospace-Mechanical Engineering
Adjunct Associate Professor, Materials Science and Engineering
Professor, BIO5 Institute
Professor, Biomedical Engineering
Professor, Biomedical Engineering - GIDP
Professor, Orthopaedic Surgery
Professor, Physiological Sciences - GIDP
Clinical Interests: 

Orthopaedic research in my laboratory is focused on developing cartilage and bone regenerative techniques with tissue engineering approaches using synthetic scaffolds and adult stem cells extracted from fat tissue. The range of research projects related to this work includes biomaterials studies to develop a variety of scaffolds prepared on a 3D printing system from microCT images of bone tissue, biomechanics studies to evaluate strength and stiffness characteristics of implantable scaffolds, computer based finite element modeling of scaffolds and tissues, software development for implantable transmitters, physiological test development to test scaffolds under physiological loading conditions, cell studies involving development of extraction, sorting , conversion and cell alignment techniques.

The overall goal of all these projects is development of clinically viable tissue engineering techniques that include monitoring of healing using sensors and implantable transmitters.

My involvement in the Orthopaedic residency program includes instructing residents in orthopedic biomaterials and biomechanics, providing laboratory support for students and surgical faculty to carry out bench top research projects, participating in radiology teaching conference to provide biomaterials and biomechanics expertise applied to surgical procedures. Student opportunities include learning about implant development and design, biomaterials and biomechanics research in orthopedics as well as tissue engineering strategies to regenerate bone and cartilage.

Student research opportunities

Dr. Szivek's involvement includes instructing residents in orthopedic biomaterials and biomechanics, to provide laboratory support for students and surgical faculty to carry out bench top research projects, participate in radiology teaching conference to provide biomaterials and biomechanics expertise applied to surgical procedures. Student opportunities include learning about implant development and design, biomaterials and biomechanics research in orthopedics.

MSRP-sponsored research

Michael Dersam (MSRP 1992): "Biomechanics of bone allograft."
Robert Kersey (AHA FELLOWSHIP 1992): "Strain redistribution near proximally hydroxyapatite coated hip implants."
Joel Thompson (MSRP 1993): "Cancellous screw pullout in osteoporotic and osteoarthritic bone."
Deborah Wilson (MSRP 1993): "Model for assessing blood flow vs. strain factors in bone loss in space: Hydroxyapatite strain gauge bonding to rodent femora."
David Amstutz (MSRP 1996): "Feedback transmitter for orthopedic knee implants."
Tony Matthews (MSRP 1996): "Analysis of contact pressures of the patellofemoral joint to determine the merits of patellar resurfacing versus the native patellae in total knee arthroplasty."
Anthony Admire (MSRP 1998): "Material and mechanical aspects of knee implant wear."
Harvinder Maan (MSRP 1998): "Development of a knee telemetry data capture and feedback system."
Chad Fleming (MSRP 1999): "Precision laser measurement of polyethylene inserts removed from post-arthroplasty knees."
Andrew Price (MSRP 1999): "Monitoring spinal fusion in scoliosis patients."
Jennifer Slack (MSRP 1999): "Assessing spine fusion using calcium phosphate coated strain gauges."
Benjamin Muir (MSRP 2001): "Testing of a synthetic bone graft to measure loading changes during fusion."
Murat Dag (MSRP 2002): "Calibration of sensate scaffolds."
Jason Davis (MSRP 2004, 2006): "Characterizing native and engineered Hyaline cartilage using OCT."
Patrick Finkbone (MSRP 2004): "Failure strength of three suture materials following cyclic abrasion through an eyelet."
Chris Geffre (MSRP 2006, 2007): "In vivo load monitoring of the canine stifle during gait" and "Measurement and characterization of bone ingrowth into polymer scaffolds coated in TGF-ß1 and calcium phosphate ceramic particles."
Paul Manson (MSRP 2007): "Scanning, production and characterization of human-sized scaffolds for cartilage tissue engineering."
David Margolis (MSRP 2007): "In vivo strain gauge attachment to mouse femora using commercially available hydroxyapatite."
Jeremy Nielsen (MSRP 2007): "Developing a mouse model of repetitive impact loading induced osteoarthritis."
Jamie Harris (MSRP 2009): "Development of a human-sized biomimetic scaffold to be tested in an ankle fusion model."
Nicholas Walter (MSRP 2009): "Evaluation of adipose derived stem cells collected from an animal model with rheumatoid arthritis and utilized for cartilage tissue regeneration."
Javier Rojas (MSRP 2011): "Correlating the Level of Load-Bearing Activity on the Medial Condyle of Canines and Cartilage Growth"

Research Distinction Track (advanced research)

Patrick Finkbone (Class of 2008): "Comparison of load measurement accuracy from scaffolds with and without cartilage layers."
Paul Manson (Class of 2010): "In vivo strain guage attachment to mouse femora."
David Margolis (Class of 2010): "In vivo strain guage attachment to mouse femora."
Chris Geffre (Class of 2012): "Real-time strain monitoring in mice during gait."
Mike Montague (Class of 2012): "Design and production of three scaffold models toward the development of a human scaffold to support tissue engineered cartilage."

Lab Affiliation: 
Degrees
  • MAS: University of Toronto - Department of Metallurgy & Material Sciences, Bioengineering, 1979
  • PhD: University of Toronto, Bioengineering, 1984
Honors and Awards
  • Ontario Graduate Scholarship, 1980-1984
  • University of Toronto Open Scholarship, 1979-1984
  • Outstanding presentation, The Knee Society, Philadelphia; selected paper for presentation at International Society meeting in Copenhagen, 1992
  • Outstanding Publication of the Year, Journal of Investigative Surgery, Vol. 5, pp. 91-108, 1992
  • NIH-NCRR Certificate of Recognition, High School Research Apprentice Program, 1992
  • NIH-NIAID Student Researcher Training Travel Award (granted to student carrying out strain gauge studies in lab), 1993
  • Louis J. Kettel Faculty Mentor Award, Clinical Sciences Mentor, Medical Student Research Program, 1995
  • Alberta Visiting Professor Award, Alberta Heritage Foundation, 1997
  • Department of Surgery, Faculty Mentor Honor Roll, 1998
  • Rubin Endowed Chair in Orthopaedic Research, 2003
  • William and Sylvia Ruben Endowed Chair for Orthopedic Research, 2003
  • National Science Foundation Lousi Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation (LSAMP)
  • WAESO Mentor of the Year, 2003
  • University Animal Care, Investigator of the Year Award, 2005
  • Outstanding Faculty Mentor, U.B.R.P., University of Arizona, 2008
Fellowship
  • University of Toronto - College of Dentistry, Biomaterials Department,1985